Due to the exponential growth of consumerism and capitalism the one thing that has suffered the most and still suffering is the environment. In the lust of getting more and more profits in less time humans have neglected the harmful effects they are causing to the environment. This is called fast fashion. The competition is fierce and to survive in this market brands are searching for different strategies like niche targeting, workwear t-shirt printing, personalisation according to customers etc. In order to make the processes quick and less costly, measures are taken that completely destroys the heath of the environment. Materials are produced by using unnatural cheap chemicals that harms the land, sea and natural habitats. Hard to dispose products, toxic wastes and industrial by products are proving to be more harmful these days than ever.
Harmful effects of fast fashion on environment
Fast fashion is one of these contributors in the environmental pollution. Fashion industry has been accused of many harms on the environment. Firms use toxic chemicals for dyeing and waterproofing of clothes that reacts with environment and makes it polluted.
With the intend to save cost of production in fast fashion firms used polyester and acrylics which are made by humans shed microfiber plastics and we all know that plastic is an open enemy of our planet and disposing plastic is time and money consuming task.
Instead of that, the clothes which were naturally made due to the increase in the trend of fast fashion have become harmful for the environment. For instance the cotton was produced from plants and the increase in demand has resulted in habitat ruined and agriculture destroyed. the cotton suppliers due to the increase demands forces farmers to produce more and in less time while farmers who are already battling hunger and desperation due to unbearably low pays and no other option of income relies on cheap harmful fertilizers that harms the heath of the land as well the heath of the farmers.
Harmful effects of fast fashion on society
Fast fashion not only has consequences on the environment but on people and society too. The people associated to creating fast fashion in most cases cross the boundaries of labour laws. The supply chain is comprised of underpaid workers, starving farmers and in extreme cases slavery.
In order to get the lowest cost of production employees are forced to work in hazardous environment, under jailor like managers, pay so incredibly low that a happy lifestyle becomes a dream. It is certain that if a product is made out of fast fashion then it must be produces neglecting the labour laws and human rights.
The cruelty doesn’t end here, other than price, speed is also very crucial in fast fashion. Now this demand of getting goods produced in less time results in child labour, overworking of employees with no pay and of course slavery is always there to meet the demands.
Contribution of fast fashion to the non-disposable waste
The fast fashion people like us wear and then throw in the trash after few weeks or months are made up of the efforts of children who should be playing or studying in school or farmers who works day and night and still failing to feed his children two times a day and all those people who are living like slaves just to survive in this cruel and greedy world.
Reducing quality of fast fashion garments
One of the many consequences of fast fashion is that it produces garments that are of extremely low quality and a joke at the face of durability. Fast fashion puts the pressure on producers to produce cheap goods quickly as a result of which the quality is compromised heavily. The quality and durability are suffered to the extent that most of these clothes last not more than a few weeks. Cheap fabric, unskilled labour and use of poor methods of production all adds to fashion that is not durable.
With this much dirty work involved in fast fashion it is obvious that most of the items prepared by using these techniques get rejected or wasted. Now the problem arises is that how to dispose all this matter, to dispose this much amount of fabric it requires heavy equipment and expensive processes which are not an option in fast fashion. As a result of all these destructive cost cutting 90% of fabric goes to waste and turns in to stuff that is substantially difficult to get rid of.
To put all of the above discussion into few lines it can be said that fast fashion does more wrong than good to the environment, to the society and to the fashion as well. Giants in the fashion industry must take serious steps towards the elimination of the harmful effects caused by fast fashion and must strive to lower the price of slow fashion products so that customers can afford these items and stay far away from unethically produced items of fast fashion.